Aircraft IT Logo

Skip Navigation Links
November 2018 October 2018 September 2018 August 2018 July 2018 June 2018 May 2018 April 2018 March 2018 February 2018 January 2018 December 2017 November 2017 October 2017 September 2017 August 2017 July 2017 June 2017 May 2017 April 2017 March 2017 February 2017 January 2017 December 2016 November 2016 October 2016 September 2016 August 2016 July 2016 June 2016 May 2016 April 2016 March 2016 February 2016 January 2016 December 2015 November 2015 October 2015 September 2015 August 2015 July 2015 June 2015 May 2015 April 2015 March 2015 February 2015 January 2015 December 2014 November 2014 October 2014 September 2014 August 2014 July 2014 June 2014 May 2014 April 2014 March 2014 February 2014 January 2014 December 2013 November 2013 October 2013 September 2013 August 2013 July 2013 June 2013 May 2013 April 2013 March 2013 February 2013 January 2013 December 2012 November 2012 October 2012 September 2012 August 2012 July 2012 June 2012 May 2012 April 2012 March 2012 February 2012 January 2012 December 2011 November 2011 October 2011 September 2011 August 2011 July 2011 June 2011 May 2011 April 2011 March 2011 February 2011 January 2011 December 2010 November 2010 August 2010

Connectivity critical to safety as Solar Impulse 2 embarks on next leg of global voyage

29/06/2015

SITA OnAir
Connect with Aircraft IT
Sign up to the Aircraft IT twitter feed for all the aviation industry's latest IT related news
Click here to learn about free Membership to Aircraft IT




Connectivity critical to safety as Solar Impulse 2 embarks on next leg of global voyage

SITA OnAir connectivity to facilitate all communications and aircraft health monitoring on 120 hour flight over Pacific

Geneva, 29 June 2015
- Early May, the now famous zero-fuel aircraft Solar Impulse 2 was forced to make an unscheduled landing in Japan due to inhospitable weather on the seventh leg of its around-the-world journey.

“The cold front is too dangerous to cross,” said an update at solarimpulse.com. “So we have decided to land in Nagoya Airfield … and wait for better weather conditions in order to continue.”


© Solar Impulse | Pizzolante| rezo.ch                               André Borschberg at the controls of Si2
                                                                                              © Solar Impulse

In this last minute decision to land, communications were provided by SITA OnAir using the Inmarsat SwiftBroadband-based satellite communications link. SITA OnAir communication services made it possible to organize landing permissions at an unplanned airfield and enabled constant contact between the Solar Impulse base team, the aircraft’s pilot and Japanese air traffic control.

“Providing global and reliable connectivity for this aircraft is absolutely fundamental for operational and critical navigation purposes, from nose-to-tail.” explains Ian Dawkins, CEO of SITA OnAir.

“This is not a wide body commercial aircraft. It’s about the weight of a car making it more sensitive to turbulence or other atmospheric disturbances,” he continues.

Solar Impulse 2 left Nagoya for Hawaii this morning, with André Borschberg at the controls. As he sets out over the Pacific Ocean, SITA OnAir’s services are again the sole means of communication between the pilot and the ground. Thanks to SITA OnAir, you can follow the flight’s progress on the Solar Impulse website.

Should technical problems occur or should weather conditions become unfavourable on the 120 hour flight to Hawaii, the constant ground link provided by SITA OnAir will help pilot, support crew and landing facilities organize an alternative route or emergency landing.

“The aircraft has generated seven gigabytes of background IP data and 2500 minutes of streaming IP data since initial departure from Abu Dhabi on March 8,” says Dawkins. “This data is comprised of messages from the 10,000 plus sensors covering the aircraft from cockpit data, from voice communications over IP and also from live streaming video when Borschberg talks to the media via his GoPro camera onboard.”

SITA OnAir also provides a suite of solutions enabling commercial airlines to personalize the passenger experience, streamline cabin and cockpit operations, and optimize maintenance procedures.

Classes of air-to-ground data being received from Solar Impulse:
  • Background IP data – largely data from the sensors around the aircraft, less time-sensitive transmissions
  • Video streaming – from the onboard GoPro cameras, real-time transmissions
  • Voice IP – conversations between the pilot and the ground, real-time transmissions